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Poor, Cold Service at Boston Restaurants?

A New England-bred chum, newly relocated to Cambridge from the West Coast, was venting about this to me yesterday. He thinks service at Boston restaurants is horrible compared with experiences in L.A. or even NY. He described it as "haughty." He dines out a LOT for business, so I don't think he's making a rash generalization. He said that, in LA, staff are eager to please and eager to make new business -- whereas in Boston, there's a "take it or leave it" vibe.
I'd be interested in other Hounds' takes -- and, perhaps, a recommendation or two for places that have amazing service, so I can steer him in the right direction!

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  1. I'd have to say your friend is pretty accurate. Service in Boston pales in comparison to other cities across the country. I've pretty much stopped dining in Boston. I can't be bother to spend good money and have to deal with a crappy attitude.

    1. I have always had amazing service at Myers & Chang. I feel like the entire staff loves working there and makes an effort to chat it up a bit when possible.

      1. How can " there's a "take it or leave it" vibe" be anything other than a "rash generalization"?

        Is Boston culture and LA culture very different, yes. Is this reflected in our restaurant culture, absolutely. But to say every restaurant is cold, unfriendly and doesn't want your business is definitely a poor generalization.

        1. I would steer your friend to places like Area Four, Rendezvous and Oleana. Those places, all in Cambridge, have very solid service in my opininon.

          1 Reply
          1. re: mkfisher

            Now that I think more about it, I would say the service is incredibly friendly at most of my usual spots. I'd add West Bridge, Cambridge Brewing, Posto, Catalyst, Toro, Eastern Standard and Gaslight to my original list. Do you stumble across the occassional bad server? Of course! That's not unique to Boston. But on the whole, these places treat us well (and that's why we keep going back).

          2. Where has your chum had poor service? I have had great service pretty much anywhere I have dined in Cambridge and Somerville lately, but admittedly, these have not been business dinners.